Nate Cohn reports at The Upshot: “Already, about 968,000 people have voted in North Carolina, out of about 4,413,000 we think will eventually vote. Based on the voting history and demographic characteristics of those people, we think Hillary Clinton leads in North Carolina by about 6 percentage points. We think she has an even larger lead – 22 percentage points – among people who have already voted.”
At Politico Kyle Cheney notes, “In Nevada, where early in-person voting began on Saturday, Democratic voters cast 23,000 more ballots than Republicans as of Tuesday afternoon, good for a 15 percentage-point edge in the nearly 150,000 ballots cast. (Mail-in and absentee ballots narrow the gap slightly.)…Polling and early-voting returns suggest Democrats are maintaining an edge in North Carolina, and they are also slicing into a thinner-than-expected early vote lead for Republicans in Florida, who now lead by about half a percentage point; in 2012, the GOP held a much more significant edge two weeks from Election Day.
…In Colorado — where Democrats hold a voter registration edge for the first time — early returns give the party a 23,000-vote lead in returned and in-person ballots. In Arizona, which last went Democratic in 1996, Democrats held a thin early-vote lead on Monday.
Even reliably Republican Texas is sending shudders down GOP spines. In the state’s most heavily populated, Democratic-leaning urban counties, early-voting turnout is surging beyond its historical pace — and new polls suddenly show the unthinkable: Texas is not entirely out of reach for Clinton.”
Hope Yen adds at kmbcnews.com that “In Florida, more than 2 million voters have already returned ballots. In-person voting began Monday, and Democrats have pulled virtually even with Republicans, at 41 percent each. That’s a much faster rate of catch-up than in 2012 and 2008, when Barack Obama won the state…This year’s numbers are troubling for Republicans…”If current early vote trends hold, it’s a real possibility that Clinton can sweep a majority of swing states including Florida,” said Scott Tranter, co-founder of the Republican data analytics firm Optimus.”
So there is some cause for optimism for Dems, but it should be tempered with caution. “Early voting may have a slight potential to affect the outcome of this election,” explains Christianna Silva at FiveThirtyEight.com, “but experts say its predictive value is not particularly high.”